Another dress from StyleARC – the Lexley blouse/dress.
Doesn’t Mum look terrific? The fabric is Kaffe Fassett voile – buttery smooth and beautiful to sew and wear. I love those neckline frills, as time-consuming and tiresome as they are to gather, pin, and sew into place. But that is just the lazy in me. It’s not difficult! I used tiny silver heart-shaped buttons as the sleeve closures. StyleARC suggest that this pattern is challenging, and they are probably right. Mostly because the instructions are on the minimal side. You do need to already know how to do some things, such as how to apply binding to the sleeve opening. Many general sewing books have this sort of information though, so that shouldn’t put you off making the blouse/dress if you’ve got a little sewing experience under your belt.
Now for the downside of this dress – I actually made this for myself in size 12. It absolutely swam on me. But luckily it fits Mum, who is size 16. The illustration on the website was a little deceiving, as this pattern is definitely oversized. However, here’s a story of excellent customer service. I emailed StyleARC and let them know of my concerns about the fit and sizing. They responded very promptly acknowledging that I was correct, that they were redrafting the pattern, and that they would send me another size 12 once it had been re-drafted. You can’t ask for more than that! We’re possibly going to shorten it to tunic length for Mum, as below.
So the verdict? I really like this on Mum – it’s not the sort of thing she usually wears, but I think that with a little convincing and practice it could go into regular wardrobe rotation for her! And I still love StyleARC patterns. I’m developing quite a wishlist.